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Taking Back Sunday – Taking Back Sunday

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Jul 12, 2021.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    Looking back at the abruptly quick 10 year anniversary of Taking Back Sunday’s self-titled record was an incredibly joyous task. At first, this record got lost in my listening shuffle of so many other great albums that came out in 2011, but I thought it would only be fair to write a retrospective in case others have made the same mistake I did and not come to fully appreciate this album. Taking Back Sunday is the fifth studio album of the band’s career, and having gone through a few lineup re-shuffling over the years, this record found John Nolan and Shaun Cooper returning into the fold after some time away from TBS. The band chemistry is absolutely majestic on these songs that sound even better than they did when I first heard them. With great singles like “Faith (When I Let You Down)” and “This Is All Now,” I’m kicking myself for not revisiting this legendary album sooner.

    Having a lukewarm reaction to their fourth album, New Again, certainly didn’t harm the process of Taking Back Sunday taking a hard look in the mirror to get back to the magic of their earlier works. What works best on the self-titled is the band being incredibly self-aware of what works best for their sound and honing in on the marquee elements that drew people to them in the first place. “El Paso” launches the band’s injection into the mainstream of consciousness with some incredible guitar playing from Nolan and Eddie Reyes with breakneck hooks. Front-man Adam Lazzara sounded as confident as he’s ever been and screams his vocals in-between Nolan’s barbs as well. “Faith *When I Let You Down)” follows the raucous opening statement, and was a near-obvious choice of a lead single from this record. Lazzara ponders in his opening vocals, “You might lose your faith in science / You might lose your faith in wealth / You might lose your faith in Jesus / Or lose faith in yourself,” before he explodes into the ear candy chorus. It’s classic Taking Back Sunday all around, and helped the band debut at #17 on the Billboard 200 with approximately 27,000 copies sold in its first week of existence.

    The immediacy of critical tracks like “Best Places To Be A Mom” and “Sad Savior” set the album up to be massively successful, and it’s a wonder as to why more don’t attribute this record to being one of the plateaus of the band’s creative potential. Other songs like the bass and drum-driven “Who Are You Anyway?” find Lazzara continuing to use his lyrical focus on questioning everything going on his life, before unfolding flawlessly into an emo chorus staple. The second single to be released from this set was “This Is All Now,” which is a curious choice, since I don’t see too much of the commercial appeal to the single with the exception of the chorus that is similar to the build up of material found on the Louder Now album.

    Luckily for the listener, things take a dramatic turn toward legendary status with one my all-time favorite Taking Back Sunday deep cuts in “It Doesn’t Feel A Thing Like Falling.” From the spiraling opening guitar riff from Nolan to the abrasive rhythm guitar elements from Reyes in the verses, all building up to the awesome explosion of sound in the massive chorus, everything fell perfectly into place on this incredible track. “Since You’re Gone” brings the tempo back down for the audience to catch their breath a bit, while the final single, “You Got Me” is much more in the same vein of the Louder Now-era tempo that made it such a massive appealing record in their discography.

    The album bows out with the reflectively calming “Call Me In The Morning,” where Lazzara cautiously sings about better days ahead over some acoustic guitar and electric elements that pluck along with ease. It makes for a great way to close out a record that has stood the test of time and will be something I will make a conscious effort to put back in my regular rotation now that summer has arrived.


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  2. Mr. Serotonin

    I'm still staring down the sun Prestigious

    I played the fuckkkk outta this record back in the day. Might have to revisit it this week.
  3. Orla

    right on! Prestigious

    Wonder if they’ll be playing any shows to commemorate the 10-year anniversary.
    paythetab likes this.
  4. fredwordsmith

    Regular Supporter

    “This is All Now” is a top five TBS song. Don’t @ me
  5. ncarrab


    It's listenable but easily their worst album.
  6. lava890

    Regular Supporter

    I always felt like this album was underrated.
  7. paythetab

    Chorus.FM Album Reviewer (Adam Grundy) Supporter

    No way...
  8. ncarrab


    I personally only go back to a few songs:

    El Paso
    Best Places
    This is All Now
    Call Me in the Morning

    Album ranking:

    While WYWTB and TAYF will always remain my all-time favorite TBS releases, at this point of my life, I'd much rather listen to Tidal Wave and Happiness Is...
    Orla and paythetab like this.
  9. paythetab

    Chorus.FM Album Reviewer (Adam Grundy) Supporter

    Fair enough! I just wouldn’t ever put the self-titled last in my rankings. Glad you’re enjoying revisiting these records too!
    Mr. Serotonin likes this.
  10. SuNDaYSTaR


    Crazy to think I saw their 10-year anniversary tour for Tell All Your Friends right after their self-titled came out.
  11. SFguitar


    Never understood why the album art for this record looked like the cover of a bad 90s PlayStation game lol
  12. paythetab

    Chorus.FM Album Reviewer (Adam Grundy) Supporter

    Lol totally!
    ramomcferno likes this.
  13. rbf737


    Best Places to Be a Mom is such a good jam.
  14. vcmstone


    As a big TBS fan, I was always at a loss why this album didn’t get more love. Not my overall favorite, but definitely high up there. So good.
  15. realdeathwolf

    Newbie Supporter

    Such a damn good album and I wish Warner would have shown it some more love. The albums TBS released after this one were definitely better but I’ll always have a soft spot for the self-titled.
    falafelmywaffle likes this.
  16. Ryan

    Might be Spider-Man...

    You voted correctly with WYWTB as their best. To me TBS lineup 2.0 was always them at their peak. Something about Freddy Mash and Matt Rubano were gold.
  17. LightsOut


    This is all now remind me of cute without the e.
    Two of their best song!
    falafelmywaffle likes this.
  18. disambigujason

    Trusted Supporter

    This album is better than the taste i remember it leaving in my mouth but i think New Again is catchier, more consistent, and has more direction.

    song rankings:
    Best Places

    El Paso
    Who are you
    Since you’re gone
    Call me in the morning
    You got me

    This is all now
    Sad Savior
  19. fredwordsmith

    Regular Supporter

    2.0 was peak TBS. That two record burst is still their peak and there’s a reason most of their live set aside from their debut is from those records. Even throwaway tracks on those would be lead singles for most bands.

    I’m still irrationally mad Fred got left behind when they went for New Again. He had some damn sauce that the TBS burger hasn’t tasted the same without ever since.
  20. mattylikesfilms Jul 12, 2021
    (Last edited: Jul 13, 2021)


    This record always serves as a reminder to be careful what you wish for.

    S/T has a few solid jams like El Paso and Sad Savior but most of these songs just don’t do it for me. This is easily their worst IMO
    thechetearly likes this.
  21. mattylikesfilms


    As mentioned in the general TBS thread - the post New Again records are a real mixed bag IMO.

    John and Shaun feel like they’re just going through the motions and while there are some highlights (Stood A Chance, All The Way, Nothing At All, Death Wolf, You Can’t Look Back, and All Excess) - most of the material has been more miss than hit for me.

    Yeah, I’m a New Again stan, but I’ve been a fan of this band since I first saw them with Boxcar Racer and The Used back in 2002. Sadly, my overall excitement for the band has faded by a lot and this record was the one that started that gradual fade. Oh well.
  22. SEANoftheDEAD


    Agreed. Fred TBS was the best TBS.
  23. AlwaysEvolving21 Jul 13, 2021
    (Last edited: Jul 13, 2021)
    Based off a timeline and songwriting level I feel like this album should have came out before louder now. They tried to go for that sound and fell a bit short writing-wise. Still think it’s a solid album from them and that it’s aged very well.

    Who Are You and Doesn’t Feel A Thing Like Falling were always favorites of mine.
    paythetab likes this.
  24. Coming off their reunion, that was such a huge disappointment and I still think this is their worst effort by far. From the endless tweaking of songs that sounded great in their initial live form, the omission of others, the return of Eric Valentine's divisive production, the questionable songwriting choices, to the simple feeling of putting it on for the first time and thinking "Is this really all they could come up with?", I was and still remain perplexed at this record's existence. It kinda feels like it was a result of both undercooking and overcooking, because the demos show they were initially headed in a much better direction than what they ended up with. We'll never know.

    It still contains a few career highlights, El Paso and This Is All Now in particular are still excellent. Otherwise, I replay the deluxe songs much more often. I'm relieved that was just a blip in their discography and that they found their groove back with John and Shaun on Happiness Is and Tidal Wave.
  25. aoftbsten

    Trusted Supporter

    I revisited this a few months ago and it was far better than I remembered. Still near the bottom of their discography for me, but there are some great TBS songs on here. El Paso, This Is All Now, and Call Me In The Morning are all top tier.
    falafelmywaffle likes this.